Cast: Upendra, Saloni, Ragini Dwivedi, Sharath Lohitashwa, Ravi Shankar, Srinivasa Murthy, Avinash, Bullet Prakash, Doddanna, Sihi Kahi Chandru.
Director: Srinivasa Raju
Bangalore: To understand the basic plot of 'Shivam', one needs to sit for 3/4th of the duration of the film; and that's perhaps the only way the film pushes you. Pushes you to push your eyelids to say open, actually.
Actor Upendra is Alex, a don on the verge of climbing to the last step of the mafia ladder. He shoots his rival Khan (Ravi Shankar) in the forehead to get there. Just when you think it is atypical of an action film, you get served with a twist in the storyline. Voilà.
While the unsuspecting Alex is celebrating back home with his friends and family, the narrative of 'Shivam' takes a plunge. Don't believe us? He actually becomes a priest after his father's death to save the Shiva temple from hooligans. Wait! There's more. He is a RAW agent as well. So, the onus of ringing the death bell to the terrorists and teaching a lesson to the hooligans falls (obviously) on him.
As a sidenote we'd like to say that we feel a state of worthlessness creeping in when we still see our on-screen "heroes" shout 'Hindu - Muslim, bhai - bhai' to portray that we are a secular nation. The very idea of secularism means that there's no need to push that ideology, no?
Meanwhile, Alex, who is now Basavanna, while uttering the 'bhai - bhai' dialogue in an orange dhoti, encourages peace by slaying an Islamic terrorist. Pot, meet kettle.
Though, clichéd, Bullet Prakash's comedy works in the first half. While actress Saloni who is seen raising her head in her introduction shot goes missing in the latter half; actress Ragini Dwivedi does nothing but dance, jump into pools and sport snake tattoos. She also does some sort of exercise routine designed to pass off as dancing. We're still not sure what we saw.
Upendra sadly fails to entertain; given the misshapen screenplay, he couldn't have done much. 'Shivam' is also burdened with six songs composed by Mani Sharma which are...let's just say they're not palatable. The lyrics aren't any better either.
Our verdict: bad acting, a ridiculous screenplay and bland music make 'Shivam' hardly digestible. You can totally give it a miss.